by Jay Bergman, for DRF.com
cover photo by Curtis Salonick
Father Patrick put in another breathtaking performance for trainer Jimmy Takter and driver Yannick Gingras, capturing the $260,000 Pennsylvania Sire Stakes Championship at Harrah’s Philadelphia on Sunday afternoon (Sept. 7) in a 1:52.4 mile, one of four rich finals on the card.
|Scott Cantor Photos|
|Father Patrick again outdueled his stablemate, Nuncio, to win the PASS final for 3-year-old colt trotters in 1:52.4.|
Father Patrick allowed stablemate Nuncio to loop him leaving through a wicked :27 opening quarter. The son of Cantab Hall tucked briefly, but moved quickly to control three-eighths of a mile into the race and then was dominant. Fractions of :55.1 and 1:24.3 were accomplished with little fanfare as one-time conqueror Datsyuk was a non-threat off cover.
In the stretch, Nuncio attempted to come through the passing lane for driver John Campbell, but as his been the case throughout the two years the pair have dueled, it proved futile. Nuncio settled for second with Don Dorado earning the show spot.
Despite starting from post seven, Father Patrick earned wagering support as the 1-5 favorite. Father Patrick Stable owns the 2013 Dan Patch Award winner.
Dave Palone and Weeper pulled off the lone upset of the four finals, sweeping off a hotly contested pace and scoring as an 11-1 offering in the sire stakes championship for 3-year-old pacing fillies. In a race that featured previously unbeaten Sandbetweenurtoes and the public choice, Beach Gal, Weeper was able to follow loose cover on the backstretch and pace over the field. Following her home was longshot Also Encouraging with Beach Gal holding for third in the 1:51.1 mile.
|McWicked won the PASS final for 3-year-old colt pacers in 1:48.4.|
Sandbetweenurtoes made two moves through a :26.3 opening quarter for the front. Beach Gal, used early for position, challenged without cover for Tim Tetrick. The pace accelerated in the third quarter with Sandbetweenurtoes holding sway through a 1:22.4 clocking, but turning for home those two would tire setting up the closers.
Weeper, an Allamerican Native filly trained by Kelly O’Donnell for Bay Pond Racing Stable, won for the fifth time this season in 11 starts.
McWicked protected position early in the race, regained command from Limelight Beach and cruised to an impressive 1:48.4 victory in the championship for 3-year-old male pacers. The son of McArdle cut fractions of :26.4, :54.2 and 1:22 while under minimal pressure. In the stretch, driver David Miller allowed Mcwicked to bear out slightly, but the pocket-sitting Limelight Beach couldn’t get close through a :26.4 final quarter. Limelight Beach settled for second with Somewhere In L A holding third position after a brief uncovered move on the backstretch.
Owned by SSG Stables, McWicked won for the 12th time in his career and pushed his lifetime earnings over the $1 million mark. Casie Coleman trains the colt that will start next in the Little Brown Jug on Sept. 18. McWicked returned $2.80 to win.
Lifetime Pursuit and driver Yannick Gingras continued her domination over the 3-year-old filly trotters, setting a track record in her $260,000 championship. Lifetime Pursuit, a 1-5 choice, lingered outside through the opening quarter and then moved to the front passing the stands. Fractions of :28.4, :56.3 and 1:25 were set with Designed To Be prompting the pace without cover. But in the stretch the Brittany Farms homebred drew clear in 1:53.2, leaving a determined Designed To Be in second with a late-closing Struck By Lindy getting the third spot.
Jimmy Takter trains the filly that won for the 13th time while upping her career bankroll to $882,161.